Waterlicht Middelburg

Waterlicht – Dream Landscape about the Power and Poetry of Water

After posting a few articles on this interesting concept a while ago, I had the chance to experience Waterlicht of Studio Roosegaarde live on stage. Middelburg, a city and municipality in the south-western Netherlands serving as the capital of the province of Zeeland, celebrates its 800th anniversary these days. Situated on the central peninsula of the Zeeland province, Midden-Zeeland, there is probably no better place around the globe to host Roosegaarde’s Waterlicht. Here’s why…

North Sea Flood 1953

The living light artwork make me think about the ‘North Sea Flood’ that hit the area back in the fifties. North Sea flood (Dutch: Watersnoodramp, literally “water emergency disaster”) was a major flood caused by a heavy storm that occurred on the night of Saturday, 31 January 1953 and morning of the Sunday thereafter. The floods struck the Netherlands, Belgium, England and Scotland.

A combination of a high spring tide and a severe European windstorm over the North Sea caused a storm tide. A combination of wind, high tide, and low pressure led to a water level of more than 5.6 metres (!) above mean sea level in some locations. The flood and waves overwhelmed sea defences and caused extensive flooding.

The Netherlands, a country with 20% of its territory below mean sea level and 50% less than 1 metre (3.3 ft) above sea level and which relies heavily on sea defences, was worst affected, recording 1,836 deaths and widespread property damage. Most of the casualties occurred in the southern province of Zeeland.

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Waterlicht by Roosegaarde

‘Waterlicht’ is the dream landscape about the power and poetry of water. As a virtual flood, it shows how high the water could reach without human intervention and raises awareness around rising water levels caused by global warming.

Originally the light artwork was created for the Dutch District Water Board Rijn & IJssel. New site-specific series of WATERLICHT were created for the Museumplein in Amsterdam which attracted more than 60.000 visitors in 1 night and the Afsluitdijk in the Netherlands, among other places.

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Roosegaarde’s Waterlicht in Middelburg, The Netherlands. Picture: Studio Roosegaarde.

Innovation is engraved into the DNA of the Dutch. Its national landscape as seen by its innovative water program and creation of dikes reflects this very well. WATERLICHT is a powerful and somehow poetic experience to remind us of the role and importance of innovation.

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Windlicht by Roosegaarde – A Celebration of the Beauty of Green Energy

“Windlicht” is an artwork by Studio Roosegaarde showing the beauty of green energy. By means of special software and tracking technology, the windmill blades are detected to rotate at 280 km / hour. Straight green lines of LED light are connecting the blades of the individual windmills. It creates a dynamic play of light and movement.

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Linking Light and Landscape

With Windlight, Roosegaarde intends to create the missing link between the Dutch and the beauty of our new landscape. I appreciate this project very much because of its awareness generating power to the crowd. The majority of local citizens may complain for years, see these ‘giants’ as a thorn in the flesh, call it horizon pollution. But times are changing, this next generation 21st century windmills are amidst us and part of our next generations life. While struggle about finding appreciated locations at sea goes on, the need and urgency of renewable energy keeps growing. Windlight can be experienced for free on the Eneco windfarm at Sint Annaland in Zeeland, Netherlands.

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Waterlicht on Display in Middelburg, Zeeland, NL

By the way, I heard that the City of Middelburg invited Studio Roosegaarde to illuminate the celebration of 800 years Middelburg City in 2017 by means of it’s Waterlicht installation, an earlier success story of this amazing studio. If you ask me, there’s no more important area in all Western-Europe for raising water flood awareness… Curious to see how that works out!

If you want to learn a bit more on this wonderful area, please refer to the ‘About‘ page of this blog, there’s an impressive movie embedded on this particular area.

Pictures in this post are sourced from Studio Roosegaarde.

Amsterdam is Flooding

Virtual Flood by Studio Roosegaarde at Museumplein Amsterdam Raises Water Awareness

Experience the Vulnerability of Water
Following the Artist Daan Roosegaarde latest installation “Waterlight” in Westervoort back in February, Studio Roosegaarde lets the visitor experience the almost forgotten power and vulnerability of water again. This time, the Museumplein in Amsterdam is hosting a 3-day public light art event to raise water awareness end emphasise the beauty and power of light.
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As a virtual flood, Waterlight shows how high the water could reach without human intervention.

8 Acres of Inner Amsterdam Flooded
Located in the inner city of Amsterdam, Museumplein is an 8 acre square located in the inner city of Amsterdam that has been virtually placed underwater through the use wavy lines of light. Like the ‘Rainbow Station‘ project at Amsterdam Central Station by the end of 2014, ‘Waterlight’ is realized by implementing the latest LED technology, enabling software and lighting optics.
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Waterlight by Roosegaarde” is open to the public and can be experienced from May 11 – 13th between 22:00 and 00:00 at the Museumplein in Amsterdam.

Waterlicht Project

WATERLICHT is the dream landscape about the power and poetry of water. As a virtual flood, it shows how high the water could reach without human intervention. Innovation is within the DNA of the Dutch landscape via its waterworks and creative thinking, yet we’ve almost seem to forgotten this. WATERLICHT is a powerful and poetic experience to remember.

WATERLICHT consists of wavy lines of light made with the latest LED technology, software and optics. First created for the Dutch Waterboard Rijn & IJssel in Westervoort, the artwork has now travelled to Museumplein Amsterdam.

Related post(s): ‘Waterlight’ by Studio Roosegaarde Creates Dutch Water Awareness

Photos in this post are courtesy of Studio Roosegaarde/Pim Hendriksen.